5d Brown, DIE 1, Single Wmk, 1915-1924
Die 1 printed by JB Cooke and TS Harrison using a single plate and first issued on 22nd February 1915. Die 2 printed by John Ash using 2 Plates and first issued in August 1930.
The 5d Brown value was first printed by JB Cooke in 1915 using one of the spare master dies issued by Perkins Bacon & Co.. Extra white lines were engraved into the coloured border in front of the Kangaroo and Emu, which is a unique characteristic of the "Die 1" 5d Brown issues. A single plate was used for all of the printings on Single Watermark paper. Cooke made 3 printings of the 5d Brown Die 1 on Single Watermark paper between February 1915 and November 1916 which were perforated using a Single-Line perforating machine. Cooke also made a single printing of the 5d Brown Die 1 in April 1917 which were perforated with a Comb perforation machine manufactured specifically for the KGV definitives.
TS Harrison made a further 5 printings of the 5d Brown Die 1 between March 1919 and April 1923, all of which were perforated using the Comb perforation machine. Harrison also made a separate small printing of the 5d Brown Die 1 utilising some remaining stock of Rough Paper which was used for printing the 1d Red value in 1918. These sheets were perforated using the Single-Line perforation machine and were punctured "OS", representing the scarce "5d Chestnut, Die 1, Single Watermark, Single-Line perforation, Rough Paper, perforated OS" issue.
In 1930, John Ash developed a new Die (Die 2) without the additional lines in the coloured border for his printings of the 5d value. Two printings were made in August 1930 and March 1931 on Small Multiple Watermark paper using a single plate, which is referred to as "Plate 2". All of the Ash printings were perforated using the new 12.5 X 13.5 comb perforation machine. Ash made a further 3 printings between November 1931 and January 1933 using Plate 2 on CofA Watermark paper before destroying Plate 2 in late 1933.
John Ash developed a new Plate (Plate 3) derived from the Die 2 master die in 1933 which he used for a further 9 printings on CofA Watermark paper between September 1933 and August 1938.
Standard texts used to identify 5d varieties are:
Davidson, AS, Dix, VW, & Rowntree, AW, 1980, Commonwealth of Australia, The George V Fivepence, British Society of Australian Philatley.
Kellow, J (Ed.) 2014, The Australian Commonwealth Specialists' Catalogue: King George V, Centenary of the King George V Definitives, 1914-2014, Brusden-White.